French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on May 22 that the second round of postponed elections will be held on June 28 after it was called off due to coronavirus pandemic. The second round of local elections was earlier scheduled for March 22 but couldn't be held after France announced a nationwide lockdown keeping in mind the coronavirus outbreak. According to reports, more than 16 million people from 5,000 cities and towns are eligible to vote in the upcoming elections.
The French government said that voters will have to bring their own pens for signing registries and wearing face masks will be compulsory to minimize the risk of contagion. As per reports, political parties had objected to the idea of holding the elections as they feel that due to coronavirus voters turnout may be low and urged the government to delay the democratic process until September. The second round of elections was scheduled are no clear winner emerged in the first round on March 15.
France started to reopen the country earlier this month with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe issuing new guidelines outlining how the country will move ahead in the coming months. Philippe issued guidance on the testing and isolation of the sick, wearing masks, and public gatherings. Philippe said it will be mandatory for people to wear masks in public places or travelling in public transport or taxis. Philippe also said businesses will be allowed to reopen but restaurants, cafes, and beaches will remain closed until at least June.
According to figures by Johns Hopkins University, France has recorded 1,82,015 confirmed cases so far, of which over 28,000 people have lost their lives. The mortality and infection rate in France has dropped significantly in the past two weeks, which has encouraged the government to resume some operations in the country.
(Image Credit: AP)